Leaders in Silicon Valley and Japan Collaborate to Inspire the Next Generation of Innovators


U.S.-Japan Council's Annual Conference will focus on entrepreneurship, advancing women’s leadership and promoting Japanese businesses in the United States

Santa Clara, Calif. – October 11, 2016 – U.S.-Japan Council (USJC), a Washington, DC-based nonprofit educational organization that strives to strengthen U.S.-Japan relations, announced today its Seventh Annual Conference program. This year’s Conference will be held in the heart of Silicon Valley, Santa Clara, California, from November 14 to 15, 2016. It is the latest example in connecting Japan and Silicon Valley, following Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s visit last year, in which he declared the need to revitalize Japan’s economy by bringing Silicon Valley’s innovative ways to Japan and globalizing Japan’s promising technologies.

“Creating a lasting bridge between Japan and Silicon Valley is of vital importance to Japanese and American leaders. This year’s conference provides an excellent opportunity to share our collective knowledge and experience, particularly in innovation and entrepreneurship, through people-to-people and business-to-business connections,” said Ms. Irene Hirano Inouye, President of USJC.

The two-day Conference will discuss Silicon Valley’s unique ecosystem and dynamic industries where the two countries can work and invest together, including artificial intelligence and financial and health technologies. Current events and social issues in both countries will also be the subject of several panel discussions and workshops.

Highlights include:

  • The Silicon Valley Experience and opportunities for U.S.-Japan collaboration and investment
  • Japanese Small to Medium Businesses (‘Hidden Gems’) Demonstration: A live ‘pitch’ session featuring more than 25 innovative companies from Japanese prefectures
  • Women’s Advancing Leadership in the Workplace and the World: Discussing innovative ideas to advance women’s impact in the workplace in both Japan and in Silicon Valley
  • 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games: A review of current planning and corporate support of the Games
  • Building Bridges – Not Barriers: A discussion, facilitated by millennial members of USJC, of how Japanese Americans can lead people of different backgrounds towards non-violent resolutions, break down barriers and prejudices, and dissipate existing tensions.

Keynote speakers include Mr. Hiroaki Nakanishi, Chairman of the Board, Representative Executive Officer, Hitachi, Ltd.; Mr. Peter Schwartz, Senior Vice President, Strategic Planning, Salesforce; and Mr. Brad Smith, President & CLO, Microsoft Corporation. Other distinguished speakers include Secretary Norman Y. Mineta, former Secretary of Transportation and Commerce; Ambassador John V. Roos, former Ambassador of Japan to the United States; Ambassador Masaharu Kohno, special representative for the Middle East and Europe & Special Envoy for the Middle East Peace of Japan, as well as Senior Advisor to the TOMODACHI Initiative; Ms. Hiroko Kuniya, journalist; Ms. Kathy Matsui, Vice-Chair, Goldman Sachs Japan Co., Ltd.; and Mr. Tom Kelley, Partner of IDEO.

For the full list of speakers, click here. To see the agenda (this includes programs not open for media coverage; for more information please see the media registration link below), click here.

Follow the USJC Annual Conference in Silicon Valley at #trek2tech.


Media Information:
Date and Time: Monday, November 14 (9:30am-6:00pm) & Tuesday, November 15, 2016 (9:00am-Noon)
Location: Hyatt Regency Santa Clara Hotel, 5101 Great America Parkway, Santa Clara, California 95054 USA (some events will be held at the adjacent Santa Clara Convention Center)

Registration: Press registration is complimentary. Click here to register: bit.ly/USJCAC2016Media


About the U.S.-Japan Council (USJC)
The U.S.-Japan Council is a Japanese American-led organization fully dedicated to strengthening ties between the United States and Japan in a global context. By promoting people-to-people relationships through its innovative programs in networking and leadership, the Council serves as a catalyst to inspire and engage Japanese and Americans of all generations. The Council was founded in 2008 and is headquartered in Washington, DC with staff in California, Hawaii and Tokyo. In 2012, the U.S.-Japan Council (Japan) was created to support the administration of the TOMODACHI Initiative, and in 2013, it became a Public Interest Corporation (Koeki Zaidan Hojin). The U.S.-Japan Council (Japan) maintains an office in Tokyo, Japan. http://www.usjapancouncil.org/


Media Inquiries:

Christine Yum Lenz
Media Relations Contact for USJC

Shiori Okazaki
Communications Manager